Henderson County Texas 9-1-1 District Updates Their Address Point Layer in Preparation for Next Generation 9-1-1

HENDERSON COUNTY FACTS:

Population: 78,532

Number of 9-1-1 calls each year: over 37,000

Number of PSAP work stations: 3 PSAPs with 7 workstations

Other Henderson County facts:

Henderson county

  • Henderson County was named in honor of James Pinckney Henderson who was the first Attorney General of the Republic of Texas and later Secretary of State for the Republic.
  • The county seat is Athens which is known as the “original Home of the Hamburger.”
  • The county was established in 1846, a year after Texas statehood.
  • Henderson County covers 873 square miles and an average of 90 people live per square mile.

“Our staff is very appreciative of GeoComm’s leadership on this project. We are excited about the addition of the newly developed Address Point Layer and look forward to utilizing the new point system and many attributes on a daily basis. We are confident that the more accurate and greater detailed maps will provide agency dispatchers with the heightened location information they need in directing first responders in emergency situations.”  Don Houston, Executive Director – Henderson County 9-1-1 Communication District

9-1-1 service is a vital part of our nation’s emergency response system and in order to deliver emergency help more quickly and effectively, public safety entities are continuously upgrading their 9-1-1 network. Henderson County Texas 9-1-1 Communication District, like many agencies throughout the nation wanted to enter into a Next Generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1) environment and realized they needed the most accurate GIS data possible. The District’s road centerline data was originally developed by a third party over 20 years ago, and while being updated with new subdivisions and roads, needless to say, even greater accuracy was the goal. The District Board of Managers decided the best way to start progressing towards and NG9-1-1 environment was with an updated address point layer.

An address point layer is a GIS data set that uses discrete coordinates to represent the geographic location of sites and structures within a jurisdiction. Address points typically contain detailed information about each location such as physical address, resident or business name, phone number, parcel information, special notes, or hyperlinks to floor plans, and structure photos. A two or even three-dimensional discrete geographic location such as a latitude/longitude coordinate is also embedded within each address point.

Because an Address Point Layer provides such detailed information, it has become a critical GIS data layer used by 9-1-1 dispatchers. They use this GIS data layer to aid in directing the first responders to the emergency location, providing more accurate and precise location mapping for Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) and emergency responder tactical applications.

GeoComm began developing Henderson County 9-1-1 District’s Address Point Layer by creating an initial data layer that would be used as the foundation for field collection and all future updates. This initial layer was generated by geocoding the District’s county wide address databases to pinpoint the location of the address based on the street name and address range attributes in the road centerline. Then GeoComm GIS Field Specialists drove each of the roads in Henderson County to validate the addresses and correct locations of the initial points, adjust them to structure tops, and gather other remaining crucial data needed to enhance this GIS data layer. The District did not change any addresses, rather the goal was to further validate and define the physical attributes of existing address locations.

Currently, Henderson County 9-1-1 District officials are completing some internal editing and polygon enhancement work which will further their GIS data accuracy efforts. Prior to this project, the District’s GIS data used an address range to locate a structure, but now they have an exact point. An exact GIS address point is much more accurate than their previous road centerline data and helps Henderson County 9-1-1 District achieve their goal of improving the emergency response times and in getting assistance to that caller in need.